Berkeley, California is becoming a national problem. Yet another riot broke out in the city between political extremists. 13 people were arrested, joining 'Based Stickman' ---who was pre-emptively arrested on an outstanding warrant this week---in the local jail.
To it's credit, the Berkeley Police actually seem to have taken some measures to prevent this riot---unlike previous outbursts. They had prohibitions against wearing masks and carrying weapons; which were ignored by Anarchists who stormed the police barricade. There were some serious injuries reported, though at this writing it is unknown how many.
This is happening far too often in Berkeley; and there is really no excuse for it. It's no secret that most of these agitators are coming from out of town to disrupt and terrorize the residents living there. Berkeley used to be a nice town. It was formerly a rather quiet college town and the UC-Berkeley was part of a project to create a 'Western Ivy League'; along with Stanford, Cal Tech, and some others. But it's been many years since UCB has produced any alumni of any distinction; and the city has simply degenerated into an American version of Belfast or Beirut.
It's going to take firm and strong measures to restore order in Berkeley, which neither Mayor Arreguin nor Governor Brown seems to have the will to do. This is not a partisan issue; but as President Trump said of Charlottesville, extremists at both ends are equally to blame. Nor is it a First Amendment issue. There's no Constitutional Right to commit violence in the name of 'free expression'.
Title X, United States Code, Section 333 reads as follows:
"The President, by using the militia, or the armed forces, or both, or by any other means; shall take such measures as he deems necessary to suppress in a State any insurrection, domestic violence, unlawful combination, or conspiracy, if it
" 1. so hinders the laws within that State and the Laws of the United States within that State, that any part or class of its people is deprived of a right, privilege, immunity, or protection named in the Constitution and secured by Law; and the constituted authorities of that State are unable, fail, or refuse to protect that right, or privilege, or immunity or fail to give protection. Or;
"2. opposes or obstructs the execution of the Laws of the United States or impedes the course of justice under those laws. In any situation covered by Clause 1, the State shall be considered to have denied the equal protection of the laws secured by the Constitution."
Note well the bolded part of the law: it is very clear that the President has full authority to deploy the military in any part of the country involved in Civil Insurrection. This is what qualifies the City of Berkeley as a candidate for this type of action: because the course of an average citizen's ability to exercise his rights is continually being impeded by people who have no respect for law. The local authorities have shown that they are unable to control the situation.
Should Trump take a bold step like this? The fact is, that he legally can. President Grant invoked this very statute to suppress the KKK in North Carolina; Presidents Eisenhower and Kennedy used it to enforce desegregation laws; and President Bush Sr. used it to put down the Los Angeles Riots. And there are certainly parallels between these and the situation in Berkeley.
Probably a good intermediate step would be for the President to impress upon the California authorities that, if they continue not protecting the residents of Berkeley, the Federal Government will be obliged to intervene.
At any rate, something needs to be done. Mayor Arreguin did make an effort this time; hopefully he's getting the message. Federal intervention should always be a last resort; but the option is there, if needed.